Small-Caps Show Continued Weakness

U.S. markets were mostly higher on Thursday after making higher highs while trading in tighter ranges ahead of Friday’s Employment Report. Other economic news concerning jobs came in soft and led to the opening choppiness along with ongoing trade concerns with Mexico over the near-term.

Mexican President Obrador believes a deal could be achieved with more talks scheduled on Friday and ahead of a 5% tariff set to be imposed on Monday. Ongoing frictions with China also remain in play, though President Trump said he wouldn't decide until after the G20 on additional tariffs.

The Dow closed in positive territory for the 4th-straight session after adding 0.7% and tapping an intraday peak of 25,800. Near-term and lower resistance at 25,750-26,000 was cleared but held on the 2nd-straight close above the 200-day moving average.

The S&P 500 gained 0.6% to extend its winning streak to 3-straight sessions while tapping an intraday high of 2,852. Fresh and lower resistance at 2,850-2,875 held with a close above the latter and the 50-day moving average signaling additional strength.

The Nasdaq was higher by 0.5% after testing a 2nd-half high of 7,634. Current and lower resistance at 7,600-7,650 was cleared and held with a close above the latter signaling additional strength towards 7,700-7,750.

The Russell 2000 fell for the 2nd-straight session after giving back 0.2% with the intraday low reaching of 1,490. Near-term and upper support at 1,500-1,485 was breached but held with a close below the latter reopening risk towards 1,475-1,460.

Energy led sector strength after rallying 1.9% while Materials and
Technology jumped 1.2%. There were no sector laggards.

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AMD (AMD) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Morgan Stanley
Flex (FLEX) upgraded to Conviction Buy from Neutral at Goldman Sachs
Outfront Media (OUT) upgraded to Outperform from In-Line at Imperial Capital

Cloudera (CLDR) downgraded two notches to Hold from Strong Buy at Needham
Qorvo (QRVO) downgraded to Equal Weight from Overweight at Barclays
Spirit Airlines (SAVE) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman Sachs

There are no major announcements scheduled.

Friday's economic reports (EST): 
Employment Report - 8:30am
Wholesale Trade - 10:00am
Baker-Hughes Rig Count - 1:00pm

Gold closed at $1,342.70 an ounce, up $9.10
Silver settled at $14.90 an ounce, up $0.11
Copper finished at $2.65 a pound, up $0.03
Crude Oil was at $53.18 a barrel, up $1.48
Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) ended at $9.25,   down  $0.57

  I hope this helps you prepare for the trading day. Make it a great one!

   Todd Mitchell

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